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Matt Stone & Trey Parker tossed an entire South Park episode after Trump won

05.04.2017

South Park

Typically, an episode of South Park goes from script to finished product in just a week. It's an awful lot of work, but this quick turnaround gives South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker the opportunity to immediately respond to any sort of political or pop-culture news. As the previous season aired during the 2016 United States presidential campaign, it was only natural that they would riff on the race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, but neither Stone nor Parker ever thought that Trump would be elected President of the United States. The seventh episode of South Park's twentieth season was set to air the day after the election, and an episode dealing with Hilary's win and Bill Clinton becoming the first gentleman was in the works.

Trey Parker and Matt Stone explained the situation while speaking with The Ringers' Bill Simmons.

We were heading down this whole path [with] this big boy-girl war going on, and everyone thinks, “OK well hooray, Hillary’s gonna be president.” And that means that Bill Clinton is the first gentleman. That to us was the most ironic, coolest thing to focus on. “OK, there you go, you win, he’s officially the first gentleman, how do you feel, girls?” And that’s where the whole season was going and that’s what really got torn apart. [Mr.] Garrison was supposed to come back and just start teaching again and all this stuff and we were now just locked in to this other [timeline].

Once it became apparent that Donald Trump would become the 45th President of the United States, Matt Stone and Trey Parker weren't quite sure what to do considering that they needed to air an episode in just 24 hours. Stone said that they initially thought about skipping their air-date altogether.

Go black was what we talked about. [We talked about] airing the show as-is and just being like, “Here it is, it’s a document for history.” We called [former president of Viacom Music and Entertainment] Doug Herzog and said, “We can’t get the show done. It’s just really screwed up, and sorry.” And he was like, “I’m at The Daily Show, everyone’s crying, I’ll call you back,” or something like that. It was like, his world was like, everyone was coming to him saying, “We can’t do this tonight.” We show up Thursday morning and start another one. No time to process.

Trey Parker said that they went to "the dry erase board and just started erasing shit and filling in and going, "How can we line this all up to make it make sense?" By 9:30 or 10 we kind of had it figured out. I think [Herzog] would have been OK with us just going black, but it was also nice for at least real die-hard South Park fans to see that everything was still [going]. Everyone was so shell-shocked and it was like you didn’t want to see that the world had changed. You wanted to be like, “OK, this horrible thing has happened, and [Trump] has been elected president, [but] South Park’s still on the air. The sun’s still rising. Water’s still clear." Somewhat miraculously, the South Park team were able to pull it off and "Oh, Jeez" aired the very next day. As for where the next season will take us, Matt Stone and Trey Parker said that they have no desire to become the Donald Trump show.

There’s plenty of good political comedy out there. We like to dabble in that and do that one week, but then the next week we [just] want to do fart jokes.

Source: The Ringer

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